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200 South Walnut
Wichita, Kansas 67213
Senior Services, Inc. of Wichita's history began in 1968, when ministers from various downtown churches gathered to discuss the needs of older people living in the downtown core area and to develop strategies to meet those needs. They opened the Senior Ac ... more
Heiman said the fire originated from the breaker box in the Meals On Wheels kitchen.
Tuesday and Wednesday the program had to cancel meal deliveries because of dangerous conditions.
"For so many of our clients on Meals on Wheels, the volunteer is the only person they are going to see that day," said Heiman.
"So if we have to miss because of weather it could become a life threatening thing for most of these people.
It's not just a daily nutritious meal that they receive, it's also a safety check to make sure they're ok and everything's working.
Especially in this weather."
Meals on Wheels saw 71 volunteers Thursday, with at least 15 of those first timers.
Heiman said the staff there received 150-200 calls from the community to volunteer and are also completely booked for Friday as well.
of Wichita, which operates Meals on Wheels, wishes volunteers could claim 58.5 cents per mile."I know for a lot of our volunteers, retired or recently retired, they're kind of on a set budget themselves,"
For the past two weeks, staff members at Senior Services have been trying to find kitchens large enough to prepare 900 meals at once and that had adequate space and proper licensing.
They have found a temporary kitchen at Premier Catering, 10109 W. York, southwest of Mid-Continent Airport.
"The service remained uninterrupted, but the process we had to go through to make it happen was a real challenge," Heiman said.
"It's very crucial, especially this time of year when it's very cold and everyone is busy, that we are out there every day getting those meals to people," Heiman said.
The fire forced operations to the parking lot of senior services.
There, volunteers picked up meals to make their deliveries.
Heiman said the organization has a temporary location in mind.
"We do have to go through our insurance to make sure it's an acceptable facility,"
Gilbane Building Company